Crime

Iraqi IDP recounts how ISIS starved people under their control

Iraq

One internally displaced refugee in Iraq tells reporters how ISIS militants refused to give him enough to feed his children while living under their rule.

An unnamed internally displaced person (IDP) from the city of Mosul told the agonising story of how ISIS imposed its totalitarian rule on the local population without regards for any humanistic principles, even causing the unbearable suffering of innocent children:

“ISIS starved the people gradually. They began to deprive us of food until they reached the flour, the basic material, and cut it off completely. We received some flour but it was not enough to feed my children. So, I told them that I have hungry children and I want food for them and not for myself but they refused to give me flour”.

The terrorist group claimed to be acting in the name of Islam and establishing their so-called “Islamic Caliphate”, of which the de facto capital was Mosul. Nevertheless, local residents, such as the IDP that was interviewed, saw right through the group’s propaganda and made judgements based on the group’s vile and criminal activities rather than their spurious claims of religious legitimacy:

They claim that they are Muslims and Muhammad is their prophet. Mohammed has nothing to do with them or with their caliphate or ideology”, continued the IDP from Mosul.

He was perceptive to the tactics used by ISIS to draw in supporters through the indoctrination of young, impressionable individuals:

They have gathered children, washed their brains, changed curricula and printed books about the bombing, killing, and weapons.”

The city of Mosul was the most significant stronghold for ISIS in Iraq. It represented the epicentre of their short-lived, yet destructive rule. The city was liberated by the Iraqi Armed Forces in mid-July, sparking joyous celebrations across the country. Memories of their heinous crimes remain in the minds of those who witnessed them, nevertheless, the process of rehabilitation in Iraq, in terms of both infrastructure and psychological healing, is well underway, as people are given the platform to talk about their memories.